If you have read my story Jungle Lovers, you know how I feel about the importance of guidance and influence of children and how disappointing my own experience was growing up in a blue-collar town, where New York City was feared likes snakes are, the streets were said to be riddled with pitfalls every step of the way, and con men could be found around every corner.
I do not regret moving to New York City, I have not fallen into any pits that were too difficult to climb out of, and vistas like that in today's photo are in fact what I have more often seen around many corners. And I like snakes.
Icons like the Empire State and Chrysler buildings are visible from nearly everywhere. From 1931 until 1972, the Empire State Building was the tallest in the world. Although no longer the tallest building even in the United States, the Art Deco skyscraper still has icon status and is a metaphor for TALL (it is now the 3rd tallest in the USA and 15th in the world).
After a time, any resident or visitor to the city can become inured to the vistas and architecture of New York. However, along with the people, the structures of the city define our metropolis. Interest in architecture itself is often eclipsed by the dynamism of New York's many other attractions - restaurants, shops, clubs, bars, theater, parks, festivals and street life. So, it was very uplifting to see this school playground in Chelsea where models of the Chrysler and Empire State buildings are connected by bridges, decks, ladders and slides and serve as part of the school's outdoor recreation area.
This children's playground becomes a place to develop a familiarity with and appreciation of the architectural icons of New York City. And to learn that at least in this jungle, if you're careful, there is no reason to be Afraid of Snakes :)